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J.O.T.A. Jazz by Skipper (4U2USE)


This little booklet is designed to help you understand and enjoy JOTA by explaining some of the terms and procedure used by the operators. So let’s begin by explaining:—

RIG : The radio equipment, i.e. transmitter and receiver.
SHACK : The building in which the rig is situated.
ANTENNA : The aerial (and there are niany types).
QTH : The town (and often the country) from which the operator is working.
HANDLE : Operator’s Christian name or nickname.

Let us assume that our station is now all ready and the operator wants to make contact with another station. He will send out a CQ call either by phone (speech) or morse and as most of JOTA is on phone it will sound something like this:— ‘CQ CQ CQ CQ CQ this is ZE1GPS ZE1GPS over and listening’.

However, as we are mostly interested in Jamboree stations the CQ’s will often be followed by the word “Jamboree”. In that case the call would be like this:- ‘CQ Jamboree, etc., etc., this is ZE1GPS ZE1GPS óver and listening’.

If the caller has reason to believe that reception conditions at the receiver’s end are poor he may give the call sign by using the phonetic alphabet in which case it would be said thus:— "Zulu Echo 1 Golf Papa Sierra
Z E 1 G P S

and he may also use this mode of getting across names, etc. If our operator gets a reply from someone he will return to him saying something like this: ‘ZE2XYZ ZE1GPS thanks old man for answering my CQ. You’re putting out a fine business signal 5 and 9’. Then he would carry on a normal conversation.

Now let’s explain a few more things:- When replying to whoever answers, our operator would give the answerer’s call sign followed by our’s as shown above, The term “old man” is used by radio amateurs between themselves no matter what age they may be. The term “fine business signal” means that it is good and clear, whilst the figures 5 and 9 indicate the degree of readability and signal strength.

Now here are a few more terms worth understanding:-

ROGER : Means the message is understood.
QRM : Interference from other stations.
QRN : Interference from atmospherics, unscreened electric motors, hair—dryers, etc.
QSB : Fading
QSO : Radio contact.
QSL : Usually refers to the cards exchanged between two stations which have had a radio contact. (For JOT1\ we use a special QSL card).
QRX : Stand by (In other words - Wait a minute).
73 : Kind regards, best wishes, etc.
88 : Love and kisses. (But not for you lot)

A Alpha
B Bravo
C Charlie
D Delta
E Echo
F Foxtrot     
G Golf
H Hotel
I India
J Juliet
K Kilo
L Lima
M Mike
N November 
O Oscar
P Papa
Q Quebec
R Romeo
S Sierra
T Tango
U Uniform     
V Victor
W Whisky
X X-ray
Y Yankee
Z Zulu

A .-
B -...
C -.-.   
D -..
E .
F ..-.
G - -.
H ....
I ..
J .- - -   
K -.-
L .-..
M - -
N -.
O - - -
P .- -.
Q - -.-   
R .-.
S ...
T -
U ..-
V ...-
W .- -
X -..-
Y -.- -
Z - -..

1 .- - - -   
2 ..- - -
3 ...- -
4 ....-
5 .....
6 -....
7 - -...
8 - - -..
9 - - - -.
0 - - - - -


1 Unreadable
2 Barely readable, occasional words distinguished
3 Readable with considerable difficulty
4 Readable with practically no difficulty
5 Perfectly readable


1 Faint, signals barely perceptible
2 Very weak signals
3 Week signals
4 Fair signals
5 Fairly good signals
6 Good signals
7 Moderately strong signals
8 Strong signals
9 Extremely strong signals


Why not learn Morse - and learn it properly. It could be very useful and you would get a lot of fun out of it once you built up some speed.

Why not do the Slow Morse Class put out by ZE1JBY from about mid-May to mid-September every Monday Tuesday Thursday & Friday on 3.55 mHz from 6.15 to 6.45pm. You can get it on an ordinary transistor with a small aerial strung out to a tree in your garden. See me for the know-how. Its easy.

Why not use the information in this little booklet for a Patrol Quiz about twice a month before JOTA.
Why not get your Scouter to run a whole Troop Quiz with him as Quiz Master, giving points to Patrols for correct answers.
DON’T say "I CAN’T". There is a little girl of 14 in New Zealand who is a fully licenced RADIO HAM.

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Acknowledgements:-"Skipper" J. Knapman